Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Baking

Bethany at has some give-aways that prompted me to share these recipes as well as give you an idea of what I've been doing this week.

Peanut Butter Balls
2 Tbs margarine or butter, softened
1 C peanut butter
1 C powdered sugar
1 1/2 C Rice Crispies
(1/2 C chopped walnuts - optional)

Mix. Roll into balls and chill.
(I put them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and set it in the freezer.)

Melt together:
1 package of chocolate chips
a small bit of paraffin (about 1x3 inches)
Dip balls into melted chocolate. Cool.

This is one recipe that I have to make every year for Christmas, usually in a quadruple batch. I know there are other peanut butter ball recipes out there, but for ALL the men in the extended family (sons, brothers, fathers, nephews) these are THE peanut butter balls they expect and consume almost compulsively. You can't make too many; if you need to cut off the peanut butter ball supply from the addicts, they freeze beautifully.


Once we moved back to the Midwest we were able to find cherry chips again. This Christmas candy treat is similar to Cherry Mash or Cherry Bing candy bars. Extras will also freeze nicely.

Cherry Bing Bars
2/3 C evaporated milk
2 C sugar
15 marshmallows (approximately 2 cups little ones)
1/2 C butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 10 oz. pkg cherry chips
9-10 oz peanuts, chopped (I used about 2 cups)
3/4 C peanut butter
1 - 12 oz pkg chocolate chips

Mix evaporated milk, sugar marshmallows and butter in a saucepan over low heat. Boil 5 minutes stirring constantly. Remove from heat; add cherry chips and vanilla. Stir.
Pour into 9X13 well sprayed pan. Let cool.

Melt chocolate and peanut butter. Add peanuts. Spread over cherry mixture. Chill. Cut into bars.

This year I spooned cherry mixture into little mini-muffin cups and then spooned the chocolate-peanut mixture on top of that. They turned out much prettier, I think, than the little squares, but it was also more work.


Baby Ruth Bars
! C light corn syrup
1/2 C sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
1 C peanut butter
7 C cornflakes
1 C salted peanuts
some chocolate to melt on top

Butter a 9x 13 pan and set aside.
Mix the Corn flakes and peanuts in a large bowl and set aside.

Mix the corn syrup, sugar, and brown sugar into a pot. Bring to a boil, but do NOT boil. On low heat mix in the peanut butter. Pour sugar mixture over the cornflakes and peanuts and mix well, coating everything. Put the mixture into the pan and flatten. Melt chocolate and drizzle on top. Let cool and cut into pieces.

This is another big favorite of the men in my life. I tried something different and used about 5 1/2 C corn flakes and 1 1/2 C crispy rice cereal. Everyone liked it better with some Rice Crispies so that is what I'll be doing in the future. I also don't drizzle anything here - I spread melted chocolate over all the bars. When you cut them, we have found that a rectangular candy bar shape, say 1"X2" is better than a square because they are dense and chewy. These also freeze like a charm.


bethany (dreadlock girl) said...

YUM! I love different sweet things for treats :) I can't wait to try these. Thanks so much for sharing with us.

Jane said...

I think we have cherry chips here, I'd like to try the cherry bing bars.
Hey, thanks for telling me about the contests for cook books! I entered all three!
I've never put rice crispies in peanut butter balls, I bet that's good!

Lori L said...

Jane, if you have some kind of Rice Crispie cereal around and are making the Baby Ruth Bars, try what I did this year. It really was a nice addition. Wonder Boy said that it makes them a little less dense and therefore easier to chew.